Jordan Henderson set to replace 19-year-old Jude Bellingham for England’s crunch World Cup clash with Wales after poor outing in Three Lions’ disappointing draw with USA
Jordan Henderson is set to start for England in their crunch game against Wales on Tuesday.
The Liverpool captain replaced Jude Bellingham in midfield in the second half of the Three Lions’ bore draw with USA on Friday, and is set to start over the teenager his side’s final game of the group stages.
Bellingham struggled to make an impact against the Americans after scoring in the opening game against Iran, and Gareth Southgate will go with experience over youth for the match which will determine his side’s fate at the World Cup.
Jordan Henderson is set to replace Jude Bellingham in England’s midfield against Wales
Henderson was brought on for the teenager, who struggled to make an impact, versus USA
Though stylistically the move is a like-for-like replacement with Henderson set to line-up next to Declan Rice, Bellingham is 13 years his team-mate’s junior with the players at opposite ends of their careers.
Henderson is playing at his third World Cup, while the Borussia Dortmund man has played just two games at a major tournament for England, both in Qatar.
It’s unclear how many changes Southgate will make for the game in total, but he is expected to rotate his side with qualification for the next round all but secured.
Henderson and Bellingham seem to have formed a strong friendship in the England squad
A win would guarantee top spot for England in Group B, though a draw could leave them vulnerable to finishing second place with Iran and USA both on their tails.
Frustrations from fans were clear to see after the USA draw, and another poor result versus Wales will only worsen things ahead of the knockout rounds.
Midfielder Jack Grealish has branded the response an ‘overreaction’ after his players were booed off on Friday.
Bellingham has had two contrasting games at the tournament so far after shining versus Iran
Wales, meanwhile, must hope for a miracle to qualify, with a big swing needed for Rob Page’s side to reach the last 16.
They need to beat England by four goals to reach the last 16 after a disappointing defeat to Iran, but have the benefit of knowing they will not need to rely on the other result in the unlikely even that happens.
Iran will take on USA in the group’s other match, with the winner set to qualify.